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Childcare Volunteer Program in Honkau - Laos

Childcare centers are lively, busy places that can operate much more smoothly with more assistance. As a volunteer, you’ll help to provide care and attention to local children, increasing the benefit they receive and helping local staff with daily jobs.

Based in various childcare centers around Honkau village, you’ll help to arrange games and activities, cook, clean, feed and teach the children, as well as provide general attention where it’s needed. You can also help with routine tasks such as administration.

Childcare volunteer in Laos with IVHQ

All placements have fixed weekly activities, focusing mainly on education, such as English language classes. Topics such as morality, hygiene and Laotian traditions are also discussed. While some basic resources are available, you’re encouraged to use your initiative to develop activities and bring resources to assist you.

Many centers also support creative activities like painting, drawing, origami or dancing, and some centers organize visits to the river or local villages.

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Project Highlights
What you need to know
  • Affordable fees from $260 for 1 week
  • Volunteer in childcare centers

  • Help to offer general support and nurturing for local children, and assistance for daycare staff

  • Suited to enthusiastic, lively volunteers who work well with children

  • Volunteer for up to 5 hours per day

Destination Highlights
Laos at a glance
  • Based on the outskirts of Laos’ capital city, Vientiane

  • Program fees include airport pick-up, orientation, accommodation, meals and 24/7 in-country support

  • Accommodation in a dormitory-style volunteer house

  • Between 5 and 10 volunteers start in Laos each month

The IVHQ Laos Program is based in Honkau Village just outside of the capital city, Vientiane. Volunteer placements are located in and around Honkau Village and the wider Vientiane region. The Laos volunteer program begins every Monday. Volunteers can choose to volunteer for periods ranging from 1 week to 12 weeks.

After you have registered for the program, please book your flights to arrive at the Wattay International Airport (VTE) in Vientiane. Your airport pick-up is included in your Program Fee. We recommend that volunteers under the age of 18 travel internationally with a notarized letter from their parents to support their documentation.

Volunteers need to arrive in Vientiane on the Sunday before orientation. When you arrive, you will be greeted at the airport by a member of the local team and transported to the volunteer accommodation in Honkau Village. Your accommodation is covered by your Program Fee and includes the night before your program orientation.

If you are traveling in Laos prior to your volunteer program, we can arrange for you to be picked up in Vientiane on the day before your program orientation.

There are two options for orientation in Laos. The first option is a one-day orientation that starts on your selected start date, which all volunteers will attend. This runs for a full day and covers everything you need to know for your volunteer program in Laos, including an introduction to the IVHQ Laos program, the local team, general rules and a class on the local culture and language. In the afternoon, you’ll learn about the local projects, go on a walking tour of the local area, arrange your sim card, and finish the day planting vegetables like a local! The orientation will also give you a chance to meet other volunteers and swap contact details for weekend travel and socializing.

The second option is an Introduction Week, hosted by our Laos team in Vientiane. This option is very popular among IVHQ volunteers and we recommend everyone take advantage of Introduction Week, as you’ll gain a deeper understanding of the culture of Laos, a true appreciation of local life and extra time to bond with your fellow volunteers. Plus, it’s a great way to help settle the culture shock you can face when arriving in Laos.

The Introduction Week begins on your selected start date and your volunteer program will commence the following week. Introduction Week in Laos does incur an additional US$20 surcharge to cover the additional costs.

Here’s what you can expect on an Introduction Week:

Monday: Start off with an introduction to the Laos program, the local team, general rules and a class on the local culture and language. In the afternoon, learn about the local projects, go on a walking tour of the local area, arrange your sim card, and finish the day planting vegetables like a local!
Tuesday: Visit the local village in the morning to familiarize yourself with the nearby amenities and surroundings. You will them prepare a flower offering for a local temple, take part in a Laotian cooking class and enjoy a barbecue dinner at the volunteer accommodation.
Wednesday: Spend the day sightseeing in Vientiane, including a visit to the COPE Center to learn about the history of cluster bombs in Laos, and a visit to the morning market and local mall. Your afternoon consists of visits to the Victory Monument, Golden Pagoda, and Wat Si Saket. This is followed by a dinner on the riverside in Vientiane, along with a visit to the night market before heading back to the accommodation.
Thursday: After breakfast, volunteers meet to discuss their upcoming volunteer placements and receive the placement-specific orientation. In the afternoon, you will begin working at your placement.
Friday: Continue volunteering at your placement.

Please note, this schedule can be changed and/or amended depending on the needs of the project, local and weather conditions, and unforeseen circumstances. If you wish to participate in the Introduction Week, you can indicate this on your application form when you apply for the program or you can let your Program Manager know once you have been accepted on the program.

Weekdays: After the initial orientation week, you will work for approximately 3 to 5 hours per day and a typical schedule is as follows:

8.00AM: Breakfast at the volunteer guesthouse.

9.00AM: Volunteers travel to their placements by bicycle, tuk-tuk or walking. Start time and daily workload depends on the project that the individual volunteer is participating on.

12.00PM: Volunteers break for lunch and travel back to the volunteer guesthouse. In some cases volunteers eat lunch at their placement. After lunch, volunteers continue with their volunteer work (where applicable).

3.00PM - 4.00PM: Work at the placement usually ends. Volunteers are free to return to the volunteer guesthouse, plan for the following day’s activities or use their free time as they wish.

6.00PM: Dinner at the volunteer guesthouse. After dinner volunteers will have the remainder of the evening free to relax and use as they wish.

Please note, this schedule can vary depending on the project that the volunteer is participating in.

Volunteers are accommodated in a dormitory-style volunteer house in Honkau Village, approximately 60 minutes outside of central Vientiane. The volunteer house can accommodate up to 30 volunteers and you should expect to share a room with up to 4 other volunteers of the same gender. All rooms are equipped with a fan and have a shared bathroom equipped with western style toilet and shower. Bedding is provided and volunteers will need to bring their own towels. There are staff who clean the accommodation throughout the week, however volunteers are required to keep their rooms tidy.

The accommodation is equipped with WiFi which volunteers are able to use during set hours of the day. You can also purchase a local SIM card with data for an unlocked mobile phone to access the internet.

Laotian food is very tasty and during your time in Laos, you will be sure to receive some delicious treats. Volunteers are provided with three meals per day (breakfast, lunch and dinner). Breakfast is self-serve at the accommodation and generally includes tea, coffee, eggs, bread and fruit. Lunch and dinner are prepared in the guesthouse restaurant and will often include fresh vegetables, fish or meat, cooked with fresh herbs and spices, and served with plenty of sticky rice! Noodles are common at mealtimes too, as are local soups. Fresh tropical fruit is plentiful at roadside stalls and there are many street food vendors around Vientiane offering local treats. Bottled water is readily available in Laos and volunteers should budget approximately $10 per week for this (2 liters per day).

Laos

Length of Program Program Fee $USD
1 week $260
2 weeks $405
3 weeks $550
4 weeks $690
5 weeks $830
6 weeks $970
8 weeks $1,150
10 weeks $1,330
12 weeks $1,510
  • All programs attract a Registration Fee (from US$299) on top of the Program Fee (partially refundable until 60 days before your program start date*). A 5% international banking fee is added at point of payment.
  • To see prices in your local currency, use this currency converter.
  • The Construction and Renovation project has an extra cost of US$50 per week for supervision, materials and the logistics involved in this project. The Introduction Week incurs a US$20 surcharge.
  • * Terms and Conditions do apply
What extra costs will I have?
  • Visa, flights, travel insurance (mandatory), vaccinations, criminal background check, souvenirs, in-country trips or tours, transport to and from placement.
  • Transfer back to the airport at conclusion of the program
  • Spending money - Volunteers in Laos generally find US$30 to be sufficient for weekly expenses
Registration Fee
What it covers
  • Most affordable program fees
  • Expert support from a program specialist
  • Full MyIVHQ account access
  • Online volunteer training
  • Comprehensive preparation tools
  • IVHQ alumni rewards
Program Fee
What it covers
  • 24/7 in-country support
  • Airport pick-up
  • Program orientation
  • Volunteer placement
  • Accommodation
  • Meals

Volunteers have the weekends free and there is no shortage of things to do in Vientiane or further afield in Laos. Volunteers can fill their free time with local markets, adventure activities or simply exploring parts of Vientiane. Laos is a popular tourist destination, offering beautiful nature and scenery, with great biking, kayaking, climbing, caving, trekking and rafting. Volunteers who wish to take a long weekend to travel can enjoy the beautiful limestone mountains and waterfalls in Vang Vieng, visit the UNESCO World Heritage site of Luang Prabang or even take a two-day cruise on the mighty Mekong River. Volunteers staying for longer durations, or who wish to travel before or after their program, can visit areas further afield in Laos and neighboring countries such as Thailand and Vietnam. Volunteers can make travel arrangements once in Vientiane, with the advice and guidance of our local staff.

See our Laos Travel and Tours page for more volunteer travel options in Laos.

Capital Vientiane
Population 6.5 Million
Languages Lao
Currency Lao or Laotian Kip (LAK)
Time zone UTC+07:00

Weather and climate: The climate in Laos is considered tropical monsoonal, days are typically warm and sunny all year around, with an average temperature of 29°C (84°F). The rainy season runs from May to October, and this is when humidity and temperatures can peak at 40°C (100°F). The dry season runs from November to May, and this is when the temperature is typically cooler and can get to a low of 15°C (58°F)

Volunteers who are under 18 years old will be required to provide IVHQ with parental consent and two character reference letters in order to participate on the program, and may be asked to provide additional documentation to the local team. All volunteers are required to have adequate volunteer travel insurance and provide a criminal background check to IVHQ’s local team on arrival in Laos.

Free Interactive Volunteer Training - All volunteers are encouraged to complete our interactive pre-departure training, which is available exclusively to registered IVHQ volunteers. The training is designed to build an understanding of important aspects that need to be considered before embarking on an IVHQ program. It helps volunteers to prepare in the right way by providing advice on what it takes to be a safe, responsible and valuable volunteer. Try a sample of the training here.

How to get started

Pick a destination + project and apply for free
Meet your personal volunteer travel expert
Pay the registration fee to secure your place and upgrade your MyIVHQ account
Get ready to volunteer abroad, we’ll support you every step of the way!